Is planning permission always required?
Not necessarily so… We find that one of the main benefits of a loft conversion for homeowners lies in the fact that planning permission from council authorities is seldom required. Providing your loft space meets the minimum head height criteria and since the space is already present in the home and little to no building work is required, you are often free to start work without worrying about receiving a green light for your home renovations.
Often a loft conversion can be carried out without having to get full planning permission. Instead, you may only need a Certificate of Lawfulness from the Council.
The following guidelines are what to consider if you want to carry out your loft conversion under Permitted Development.
As laid out by the Planning Portals Guide to Permitted Development, your loft conversion must follow the below guidelines to be under permitted development:
- Any additional roof space must not exceed 40 cubic meters for terraced houses and 50 cubic meters for detached and semi-detached houses
- If your property faces a highway, your loft extension cannot protrude the plane of the existing roof slope.
- You need to use similar materials to your existing house.
- No part of the extension can be higher than the highest part of the existing roof.
- You cannot add a balcony under permitted development
- For the sake of your neighbours privacy, any side facing windows need to be obscure glass. They also can’t be openable unless higher than eye level (specifically 1.7m above the floor height).
- Roof extensions cannot over hang the existing roof. They are to be set back at least 20cm from original eaves. (Unless of course its a hip-to-gable extension)
However, one point to consider is that if you live in a conservation area, a flats, or on designated land you may in fact need full planning permission. Your Local Planning Authority can apply what is called an “Article 4 Direction” where the Permitted Development rights are removed. In any event, detailed structural designs and calculations are always required for Building Control approval whether your loft conversion is permitted or not.
Speak to us now for advice and help. We collectively have worked in and around Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea, Westminster, Hammersmith and Fulham, Wandsworth and many other of the London boroughs and beyond, to secure loft extension planning permission for our clients.
When working with Chelsea Planning and Design, you can rest assured that we will do the hard work of checking and securing planning permission from your local council. We’ve worked alongside the planning authorities in Westminster, Chelsea, Hammersmith and Fulham, Kensington and Chelsea, Croydon, Greenwich, Lewisham, and Bromley and have established professional relationships that help smooth the whole planning application process. What’s more, thanks to our expertise and experience in providing loft conversions, we are always able to draw up plans and designs that suit the requirements of planning authorities.
The typical questions we get asked for all types of home extensions with key information.
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There are limitations to these rights, especially if you have already made considerable alterations to your home.